First Samuel 19:1-24


Proverbs 14:35, “A king delights in a wise servant, but a shameful servant incurs his wrath.”

  • “wise” is same word used in 1 Samuel 18 to describe David –“wise and skilled”
  • Saul has twisted this verse around since he is instead a “shameful king”
  • So Saul’s version of this verse would be:

“A wise servant incurs the wrath of a shameful king.”


1 Samuel 19 has counterparts in the book of Psalms that David wrote during this time:

·          Psalm 59 – “For the director of music. To the tune of ‘Do Not Destroy.’  Of David. A miltam.  When Saul had sent men to watch David’s house in order to kill him.”

  • Psalm 11 – 11:1, “In the Lord I take refuge.  How then can you say to me:

“Flee like a bird to your mountain. . . When the foundations are being destroyed, what can the righteous do?  The Lord is in his holy temple; the Lord is on his heavenly throne.”

  • Psalm 25:1-22 – “To you, O Lord, I lift up my soul; in you I trust, O my God.  Do not let me be put to shame, nor let my enemies triumph over me. . .show me                               your ways, . . teach me your paths. . . My eyes are ever on the Lord, for only he will release my feet from the snare. . . The troubles of my heart                          have multiplied; free me from my anguish. . . See how my enemies have increased and how fiercely they hate me!   Guard my life and rescue me;                         let me not be put to shame, for I take refuge in you.  May integrity and uprightness protect me because my hope is in           you.  Redeem Israel, O                        God, from all their troubles!”
  • Psalm 7 – when David was delivered from Cush, the Benjamite


19:1 Saul had started with envy of David.  This developed as Saul sent David into dangerous situations and now openly talks to his men and even          Jonathan about how important it is that David be killed.  Saul had justified in his mind that David   was a traitor and now begins to spread his        delusion which is based only on envy

Saul will try to use:

  • David’s best friend, Jonathan, against David
  • David’s loving wife, Michal, to turn David in


Jonathan and Michal are both going to tell David to Flee as in Psalm 11


Jonathan logically worked Saul into the right frame of mind

1)      Removed David

2)      Explained the Lord’s work and gives the Lord credit for the success

3)      Recalled for Saul his success through the hand of David

4)      Restores David to Saul’s court

5)      Result is more victories (19:8)

. . .but. . .

6)      Saul apparently becomes jealous again

7)      Evil spirit prevents any further success or logic from Saul


The evil spirit keeps Saul and David at odds

Evil spirit destroys Saul

Evil spirit tests David for advancement in God’s plan


David provides Saul with military victory and harp therapy.

Psalm 25:21, “May integrity and uprightness protect me, because my hope is in you.”

  • David is not trying to get God to do something for him or trying to earn God favor
  • David knows that integrity and righteousness protect him and keep him in God’s plan
  • David’s reason for doing right is because of his hope in God.
  • So, David does right because he has faith and believes that God is working.
  • David is not doing right in order to make God work


19:10 - David flees to his house which is ultimately his entering into a life of a fugitive and an outlaw in Israel.


19:11 “Saul sent men to David’s house to watch it and to kill him in the morning.”

Psalm 59 is about this night in David’s life.

David writes in Psalm 59:16,

 “I will sing of your strength, in the morning I will sing of your love; for you are my fortress, my refuge in times of trouble.”


This is the last time David sees Michal until he is king.

David’s house is under surveillance

image is teraphim and means “household gods”, also in Genesis 31:19 when Rachel  stole her father’s (Laban) teraphim.  Teraphim where small   images not life size idols.  Michal would have used several.


Four attacks on David in this chapter:

1)      Saul’s spear

2)      Men sent to his house at night

3)      Three groups of soldiers are sent to kill him in Ramah

4)      Saul himself goes to kill him in Ramah



David goes to Samuel in Ramah


Saul palace was in Gibeah.  David flees from Gibeah to Ramah.  It is a one hour walk.

Naioth means “habitations”, or “dwellings”.  Naioth was a residential district in Ramah where Samuel’s prophets stayed.  It was like a suburb with           apartments and homes.  David used this area of the city for safety because of the large number of  people to blend in and hide among.  Some   places this is translated “house of study” which would mean Naioth was the campus of the prophets school and had dormitories.      Samuel had dedicated himself to training spiritual leaders.

We see the lone prophet Samuel was surrounded by other people and many prophets.

This is similar to Elijah and Elisha who led their school of the prophets in the same general area. 


The Spirit of God Protects David from:

1)      Three groups of soldier

2)      Saul himself

The Spirit of God came upon them and caused them to have an ecstatic experience to prevent them from killing David.

Ecstatic experience could include a trance, a vision, uncontrolled speaking that was empowered by the Holy Spirit, a state of being beyond reason and          self control.



The Spirit that had anointed Saul now attacks him:

  • Saul became confused in a very familiar area
  • For 24 hours Saul lay on the ground, with no robes, no clothes, unconscious and prophesying.
  • Removal of royal robes showed he had been striped of his royalty
  • Removal of clothes exposed and disgraced the king

“Is Saul among the prophets?”

1)      In 10:11-12 the answer was “yes”!  He is the anointed king.

2)      Here in 19:24 the answer is “obviously not”!  He is disabled and hindered from acting by the Spirit of God.


The Spirit of God would empower the prophets to do their jobs.

But, the Spirit of God was working against Saul and preventing him from accomplishing his plan


The prophets could move and perform under the anointing of the Spirit.

Saul was so unfamiliar with the Holy Spirit that he collapsed and could not operate in the presence of God.


          A comparison of Samuel/Prophets with King Saul

Samuel and the Prophets

King Saul and his men

Spirit empowered them

Spirit disabled them

Spirit worked with them

Spirit worked against them

Accomplished their jobs

Failed to accomplish their mission

Familiar with Holy Spirit’s presence

Spirit’s presence was foreign to them

Functioned in the presence of God

Could not function in God’s presence

God honored them before people

God disgraced them before people

God’s presence confirmed them

God’s presence showed they were rejected